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Food and Drink

Here’s The Scoop: 10 Must-Try Ice Cream Shops In SF

By Jamie Ferrell

Here’s The Scoop: 10 Must-Try Ice Cream Shops In SF

I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream!

The weather is warming up, summer is just around the corner, and we’re stoked to round up our favorite ice cream shops around the City! Listen, for a true ice cream fan, it doesn’t matter what season it is. But summertime sure gives us a good excuse to try out a new spot. Did your favorite ice cream shop make the list?

1. Smitten

Smitten is known for having fresh, locally sourced, simply delicious ice cream. They achieve an ultra-smooth texture with the help of Smitten CEO Robyn Sue Fisher’s patented Brrr® ice cream machine, which churns and freezes the ice cream evenly using liquid nitrogen and viscosity control systems.

Location: 432 Octavia St Unit 1A; 2404 California St; 904 Valencia St; San Francisco, CA

2. Ice Cream Bar

This full-service, 1930s-style soda fountain makes all of their ice cream in-house. They’re currently offering a limited menu due to Covid-19, but that shouldn’t stop you from enjoying these fresh, locally sourced ingredients.

Location: 815 Cole Street, San Francisco, CA

3. Bi-Rite Creamery

The Bi-Rite Family of Businesses follows a highly sustainable, ethical business model per their B corporation certification. Bi-Rite Creamery is no exception, and their small-batch ice cream comes in delicious flavors that vary with seasonal availability.

Location: 3692 18th St, San Francisco, CA

4. Swensen’s

Swensen’s has been serving up house-made ice cream at the same Hyde Street location since 1948. That’s 73 years whipping up fresh ice cream with high-quality ingredients and handmade waffle cones.

Location: 1999 Hyde St, San Francisco, CA

5. Mitchell’s

Mitchell’s is another San Francisco icon, as its been serving delicious quality ice cream, made in-house, since 1953. They were the first to introduce mango ice cream to the Bay Area, and it’s still their best seller.

Location: 688 San Jose Avenue, San Francisco, CA 

6. Humphry Slocombe

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Named after 2 characters from the 1970s sitcom “Are You Being Served?”, Humphrey Slocombe creates delicious and unusual ice cream flavors including hibiscus beet sorbet, McEvoy Olive Oil, and peanut butter curry. They also make delicious cakes and pies.

Location: Ferry Building One;  2790a Harrison St, San Francisco, CA 

7. Polly Ann

Polly Ann Ice Cream is a favorite local spot for ice cream in the City. They have a spin wheel for ice cream flavors and will even let you split flavors on a single scoop.

Location: 3138 Noriega St, San Francisco, CA

8. Nieves Cinco De Mayo

In addition to ice cream, Nieves Cinco de Mayo offers delicious shaved ice and frozen yogurt. Try their mangonada with a scoop of tamarindo ice cream, or a raspado shaved ice.

Location: 3052 16th St, San Francisco, CA 

9. Castro Fountain

This soda-fountain inspired ice cream shop offers amazing, smooth ice cream along with delicious pastries. Try premium ice cream along with a refreshing soda, or atop a fresh butter cake.

Location: 554 Castro St, San Francisco, CA 

10. Joe’s Ice Cream and Burgers

Choose from dozens of ice cream flavors, including some unique Asian ones such as sweet red bean, wasabi, and Thai tea. Be sure to try their gotchujang fries while you’re at it.

Location: 5420 Geary Blvd, San Francisco, CA

[Featured Image: @eatswithaubrey via Instagram]